Please select your home edition
Edition
Southern Spars - North Technology

Volvo Ocean Race- The drips return and a ripped jib hurts on Camper

by Hamish Hooper on 29 Feb 2012
Rob Salthouse repairing the damaged J2 onboard Camper during leg 4 of the Volvo Ocean Race 2011-12, from Sanya, China to Auckland, New Zealand. Hamish Hooper/Camper ETNZ/Volvo Ocean Race©

Camper, and her crew from Emirates Team New Zealand, were struck a cruel blow last night when one of their most crucial sails ripped in two while hurtling south at speeds of more than 20 knots.

From on board Camper, Hamish Hooper talks us through his day…

Last night was one of those nights where the VO70 turns into a boat possessed and unleashes across the ocean. We were averaging more than 20 knots of boat speed and constant blasts of white water washing over the decks were strong enough to knock us down.

It’s hard to stay in the bunk as it lurches from side to side, back and forth in no particular pattern.

The guys on deck love it – these conditions are tough – really tough, but that’s what they love. It is real adrenaline sailing. Then it gets dark and nothing changes, its just adrenaline sailing blind.



Regrettably, as always in conditions like these, the dreaded water torture drop returns above my bunk, no matter where I place my head, it always lands in either my eye or the middle of my forehead. There was also a constant drip on to my feet- I guess it evens it out.

Perhaps the cruellest bit of torture was still to come.

Not long after I had hopped into the bunk there was a loud bang, the boat suddenly flattened out and all went quiet for a few seconds before a frenzy of action on deck.

The tack rope on the jib broke and caused our J2 to explode into two large pieces


This leads me to my quiz question of the day: 'How big is the Camper J2 when it is in one piece?'
All of the guys on board are pretty amazing. Where most people would curse, ask why and descend into short term depressive anger, they just seem to take the knock on the chin, accept it and move on as best as they possibly can with what they have to work with.

Within minutes the J2 was bagged, the smaller J4 in the air and Daryl and Salty were already well stuck into the probably 12-hour straight repair work.

This is hurting us though, the sail we should have up in these conditions is the J2 not the J4 so we are bleeding precious miles to the fleet in every sked. We just have to hang tough and try to minimise any loses as best we can until the boys have the sail repaired again.

It’s not pleasant downstairs at all this morning, it’s hot, everything is wet, the entire sail is taking up all of downstairs, the air is thick with acetone ad spray glue on top of the existing body stench, and the violent lurching of the boat just adds to it all.


I was going for a full clothes change out today but it looks like I might be best to just fester for a couple more days when things settle down a bit.

Let’s hope the events of today only happen once every four years like today the 29th of February does.

Golden Quote: 'The rope that holds the jib down at the front end snapped, the jib skied up, the angle gets worse for it, it got too tight and just tore itself in half. We broke our J2, which is really the sail we should be on right now so we are a bit slow because of that and of course the lengthy time period we were down for last night. On the last three skeds we have probably drop 6 miles on average on each sked, we just can’t afford to have many more of them.'

Chris Nicholson



_______________________________________________________________________________________

Did you like this story? If you are not already a Sail-World subscriber, did you know that you can keep up with all the news from the sailing world with a regular newsletter? It's totally free.

Once you subscribe, all the latest racing news comes to you in one easy to read newsletter, right to your inbox. And it's up to date, so you don't have to wait for the end of the month to buy a magazine, to find out what's going on. You can even subscribe a friend. http://www.sail-world.com/nz/newsletter_subscribe.cfm!Click_here_now!


________________________________________________________________________________________

Ancasta Ker 33 660x82Bakewell-White Yacht DesignWildwind 2016 660x82

Related Articles

America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ welcome Optimist Nationals fleet
ETNZ sailing team popped down to the Kohimarama Yacht Club to give to the Toyota NZ Optimist Nationals fleet a hand Emirates Team New Zealand sailing team popped down to the Kohimarama Yacht Club to give to the Toyota NZ Optimist Nationals fleet a hand at the end of the regatta. The Team welcomed the 258 young Opti sailors back after the finish of the Nationals.
Posted on 1 Apr
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ remain on top of LVACWS leaderboard
Emirates Team New Zealand have maintained their lead on top of the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Emirates Team New Zealand have maintained their lead on top of the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series after an exhaustive two days of close light air racing in Muscat, Oman. Emirates Team New Zealand and Ben Ainslie Racing were the only teams to win two races each out of the six after Glenn Ashby and crew won the first race of the day again.
Posted on 28 Feb
America's Cup- Emirates Team NZ holds foiling camp in Bay of Islands
Emirates Team NZ's sailing team got together as a full group for the first time of the AC35 campaign on foiling Moths The Emirates Team New Zealand sailing team got together as a full group for the first time of the AC35 campaign for an intensive week sailing in the exciting foiling Moth yachts. It was also an opportunity to begin the process of planning and plotting the next America's Cup challenge.
Posted on 4 Nov 2014
Extreme Sailing Series- Emirates Team NZ slips to fifth at Nice
The Extreme Sailing Series focus shifts now to Sydney – the last event in the 2014 season – where all the questions will The Extreme Sailing Series focus shifts now to Sydney – the last event in the 2014 season – where all the questions will be answered. Only four days of racing remain this year with five teams – Alinghi, The Wave, Muscat, Emirates Team New Zealand, Realteam and J.P. Morgan BAR – capable of a top-three position.
Posted on 6 Oct 2014
Extreme Sailing Series- Light and tight for Emirates Team NZ in Nice
It was very light and very tricky for the first day of the seventh round of Extreme Sailing Series at Nice. It was very light and very tricky for the first day of the seventh round of Extreme Sailing Series at Nice. With Peter Burling back on the helm for the first time since June, Emirates Team New Zealand started slowly as Burling and Olympian team mate Blair Tuke settled in.
Posted on 3 Oct 2014
Extreme Sailing Series- Burling and Tuke back on board for Nice Act
The Extreme Sailing Series event in Istanbul seems to have only just finished, but already the containers are in the Vil The Extreme Sailing Series event in Istanbul seems to have only just finished, but already the containers are in the Ville de Nice set to gear up for this weeks penultimate regatta. Peter Burling and Blair Tuke are back onboard this week, fresh from their 49er World Championship win and looking to make it two wins from two events for Emirates Team New Zealand on the ‪Extreme Sailing Series
Posted on 29 Sep 2014
Extreme Sailing- Emirates Team NZ retain second overall
The stage is set for a thrilling but nerve-wracking final day tomorrow of the sixth round of Extreme Sailing Series at I The stage is set for a thrilling but nerve-wracking final day tomorrow of the sixth round of Extreme Sailing Series at Istanbul. It’s tight at the top but with a possible eight races, the last one scoring double points, there’s every chance the leader board could be in for a massive shakeup.
Posted on 14 Sep 2014
Extreme Sailing Series- Team NZ share lead after Day 1 in Istanbul
Consistency. That’s what Dean Barker wanted on the first day of racing of the Extreme Sailing Series’ Istanbul round. Consistency. That’s what Dean Barker wanted on the first day of racing of the Extreme Sailing Series’ Istanbul round. That’s what he got. As he said after practice yesterday, 'consistency will be rewarded'; Emirates Team New Zealand finished the first day at the top of the leader board with 46 points, equal with defending series champion, the Wave, Muscat.
Posted on 12 Sep 2014
Emirates Team NZ- Last race boost cannot save team from table bottom
There was good and not-so-good for Emirates Team New Zealand on the final day of the Extreme Sailing Series Cardiff rega There was good and not-so-good for Emirates Team New Zealand on the final day of the Extreme Sailing Series Cardiff regatta. By the end of the day Dean Barker and crew found themselves in unfamiliar territory – 11th on the Cardiff leader board, even after a great second place in the double-points last race.
Posted on 26 Aug 2014
Emirates Team NZ- Frustrating Day 3 in Extreme Sailing Series, Cardiff
Another frustrating time for Emirates Team New Zealand on Day 3 of the Extreme Sailing Series. Another frustrating time for Emirates Team New Zealand on Day 3 of the Extreme Sailing Series. The day started with the hearing into yesterday’s collision, resulting in the team being awarded average points for the three races missed because of it.
Posted on 25 Aug 2014